Thursday, March 8, 2012

American Idol 11: Top 13

So, we have made it to the Top 13 for this season of AI and I believe this might be the strongest group since season 7. There are some really good singers still in the running and some very interesting characters as well.

Before I talk about the show tonight I want to give some very important information about the popularity of each contestant. I will base this on the number of followers each has on Twitter as of tonight. Then after the results show I will be able to compare the numbers and see how accurate this method of ranking is. At this time, I am not following any of the contestants on Facebook, but I might start later. For now, Twitter will be my barometer of social media rankings.

Heejun- 48,496
Phillip- 44,395
Colton- 42,629
Erika- 31,697
Jessica- 22,738
Skylar- 16,162
DeAndre- 16,003
Shannon- 13,340
Hollie- 13,294
Jeremy- 11,142
Joshua- 9,412
Elise- 7,939
Jermaine- 4,123

Now, on with the show.

This was the 400th episode of American Idol. Sounds like a big deal, but that didn't really get as much hype as I thought it would.  There is a new monkey wrench thrown in to the judging mix this week.  This week is a battle between the guys and girls. The two groups will be judged separately since the guys are singing Stevie Wonder and the girls have been burdened with Whitney Houston songs. The judges will be told who is the low vote getter from each group and then they will have to pick who stays and who goes home.  This week May J Blige is mentoring with Jimmy Iovine. 

Joshua- "I Wish"- "This song is totally out of my comfort zone."  A little constructive help from MJ and he's off.  Joshua is bopping and prancing around on the stage. Definitely different than previous weeks. He sounds good and looks fairly comfortable up there. Randy- "Flawless" JLo- "Felt your performance." ST- "You listened to Mary J and nailed it."

Elise- Wanted to sing "The Greatest Love of All" but Jimmy switched her to "I'm Your Baby Tonight" and she is not comfortable with it at all. She had never heard the song before and this move has totally thrown her off. JLo- "I don't think this was your best." ST- "Your unique voice needs just the right song" and this wasn't it Jimmy. Randy- "It felt like you were boxing with the song" and now it looks like she is about to cry. Poor girl.

Jermaine- "Knock Me Off My Feet" - MJ and Jimmy love him and his voice. He sounds ok but this definitely does not knock me off my feet. He looks glued to the stage. Not much movement. Audience loves him. ST- "That song fits you like an Armani suit" JLo- Relax and feel the song. Relax your face. Randy- "Loved the verses but not the chorus."

Erika- "I Believe in You and Me"- MJ tells her that her voice is like steak and potatoes, not celery and peanut butter. She starts out low but sounds great. Perfect song for her.  Randy- "Amazing voice, unbelievable tone." JLo- goosies starting with the mentoring session. ST- "It was perfect."

Colton- "Lately"- Jimmy immediately says that Stevie is "not his wheelhouse" and asks Colton to play one of his original songs for them. Then he tells Colton to rely on his vulnerability when he sings.  He sounds awesome. Made the song his own. ST- "Amazing, outstanding"  JLo- "Your heart came through. It was great." Randy- "Not perfect but the last part was flawless." Ryan comments on Colton's smoldering eyes to America. "You can hear the girls screaming in Hacienda Heights."

Shannon- "I Have Nothing"- MJ says "I can see you thinking. Stop running for the big notes." this poor girl is so nervous. She is missing notes big time. She looks so uncomfortable up there. Shannon knows that she blew it. And the judges agree.

DeAndre- before we hear about this week's song choice, Ryan talks to DeAndre about his save last week and DeAndre freaks over the video of himself crying. "Laud have mercy."  This week is "Master Blaster" and it is definitely reggae to the max. He sounds good.  Not so much falsetto this time around and I like it much better.  I do feel that the staging of the song is a little distracting though with all the pseudo-smoke floating through the background. ST- "Jamaican flavor"  JLo- "You have rythym and soul."  Randy- "You showed another side of you tonight, You nailed it."

Skylar- "Where Do Broken Hearts Go" Jimmy and MJ say hold back some on the chorus the first time. I like this performance. Countryfied Whitney. JLo- "You are like the definition of composure. Amazing." ST- "A thing of beauty." Randy- "What I love about you is that you can sing any song."

Heejun- First Ryan shows us Heejun's silly Twitpics. "All is Fair in Love"- MJ is caught off-guard by his voice. He has won over Jimmy and brings him an autographed photo. This is an interesting sound for the song. He seems almost too soft at the beginning but he gets better as it goes along. Last note is the best of all. Heejun bows to the audience and the strings section accompanying him. JLo- "I love you." ST- "Fantastic" Randy- "it wasn't perfect, but it was really good."

Hollie- "All the Men That I Need"- Great advise from MJ on hitting the last high note. This girl has such a big voice for someone sooooo small. She is beautiful and so is the performance. Randy- "Dude, you nailed it."
JLo- "We might have a sing-off between two girls in the final." ST- "That was really nice."

Jeremy- "Ribbon in the Sky"- MJ says she likes him and "there is something about his voice that I love."
This is a sweet song from a really sweet guy. he does a really good job on a really difficult song. Jennifer looks like she will cry. ST- "Great song, nice passion." JLo- "I love to hear you interpret a song." Randy- "Not the best, need more swag for this song."

Jessica- "I Will Always Love You" Jimmy wants less vibrato and I agree. Jimmy and MJ a amazed by session. She starts with a beautiful a Capella beginning. Incredible performance. Standing O from all. Randy- " This is one of the best talents in the whole country." JLo- "It was beautiful." ST- "You just made 40 million people cry."

Phillip- "Superstition"- This performance was just over the top good.  ST-"You're a very interesting character. You have a lot of 'forget-about-it' in your voice." JLo- "you made it your own and you killed it." Randy- 'You drive your own car in your own lane and I love it."

So here are my ratings for the groups: best to worst
Girls: Jessica, Hollie, Erika, Skylar, Elise, Shannon
Guys: Colton, Phil, Joshua, Jeremy, Heejun, DeAndre, Jermaine.

Well see how I did.

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